Tell me what it is you want to do with your one wild and precious life? -mary oliver

Saturday, April 9, 2011


We’re here.   

Austin’s Reader’s Theatre was adorable, and he was so proud of being the narrator.  My kids’ wonderful teachers have been working since Tuesday to get Skype hooked up in their classroom, so we can skype into their classes.  Andy helped Austin’s teacher set up her account, and we’ll schedule a few sessions once we’re in region.  What a wonderful opportunity.  As we were leaving the school, teachers, staff, and parents were wishing us Godspeed and safe travels on our journey.

Our flights were uneventful, which is good.  The longest flight was 9 hours, but it was during the night.  I slept for a hour off and on, but not consecutive.  Once we landed in Germany, I was so thankful I packed a few essentials to freshen up.  I felt like a truck had run me over. 

Travel Tip #1:  Luggage- we checked one large duffel bag, and 1 rolling suitcase.  We carried on a backpack each, and 1 rolling carry-on.  That’s it for the duration.  It was easy to carry around the airports, and it fit easily in Niko’s car.(Your driver).  Once we got to Philly, we bought some “gifts”  at the duty free store, so we had that paper bag, also!

Travel Tip #2:  Pack Colgate wisps, cleansing facial wipes, makeup, etc, on the plane.  I’m telling you I felt like a new woman once I was able to freshen up after the long flight.  Food was plentiful on the flights, so don’t think you need to take a lot of snacks.  

Travel Tip #3:  Passport Control/Immigration- Once you arrive, you will be standing in a line to complete an Immigration Card.  You’ll need to use Yulia’s address to complete it.  We forgot about this, but luckily we had her address in our paperwork.

Niko helped us exchange some money at the airport, and he helped a couple American girls in front of us who had difficulty communicating.  He brought us to our apartment, where a lady was finishing cleaning.  We dropped our luggage off, and he had to go pick up the White’s.  So,  Andy and I went to a yummy pizza place for a late lunch.   I didn’t have time to pack my purse, and I wished I would have taken the time!!

The big jug of water is for everything.
Travel Tip: #4:  Always take a roll of travel tp with you.  Our apartment has a lavatory, that I’m accustomed to, but the restaurant did not.  So, be prepared for any type.  I’m just sayin…

Instead of stopping at the market, we came straight back, called our parents, and crashed. 

Lisa, those cheesecake/ice cream on a stick are to die for. 

Hopefully the weather will warm up tomorrow morning, and my computer will work.  It will be a long stay if we have to Share technology!!!!

Keep Smiling,


  1. Hurray You're there!!! Your apartment looks a lot nicer than ours was and there were 4 of us. But we managed just fine except for the internet issues. I hope you have internet in your apartment. That makes a BIG difference. Hmm...Lisa never told me about the cheesecake on a stick thingie. I'll have to give her a hard time about that one. :)

    Enjoy your tour day tomorrow soaking in the sights. It's an amazingly historical city with lots to see and learn.

  2. I am cracking up that you have already found and consumed the ice cream treat. (If Kristin would have actually read my blog posts while we were there, she would have seen a big photo and description of it :).)

    Thinking of you--staying up on all the issues as much as we can over here. Would love to hear things from your perspective if you have a chance to email or send a fb message!

    I hope tomorrow goes as planned with the SDA appointment and that you are enjoying your time over there!

    xo, Lisa

  3. so so happy you made it safely!! Before you know it Sarah will be in your arms!!!

  4. Sooo Excited, you are there, and so close to meeting your daughter! I absolutely cannot wait, I will be stalking your blog, just so you know!

  5. Woo Hoo!!!! I too was on an immediate mission to find that darn ice cream treat and I don't think I was able to find the EXACT one until our second trip so KUDOS to you Shelly!!!!

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  7. So glad you posted pics of your apt - we stayed there too! Sounds like you may be heading to a city close to where our girl was too. Glad you're enjoying your adventure :)

  8. Shelly, I'm just getting caught up on your trip! You are in the same apartment that John and I were in on our first trip!! Pray that the power doesn't go out! Just sayin... hehe Enjoy your time there, it is a wonderful city!!